The Modern-Classy Russian Folk Art in 2019

There are a lot of forms of folk art such as paper tearing, embroidery, shadow play, and carving. Each practice used to be loved by royalty and common people alike back in ancient times. However, in today’s age, science and technology have sped up so fast that the world is all about change. People are no longer interested in traditional folk art.

It is becoming harder to keep folk art alive. The experts are getting no younger and the new generation is not that interested in taking over the folk art or promoting it. Part of the problem is that the new generation does not know much about folk art; meanwhile, the government usually does not do a lot to promote it either. It means that the new generation barely figures out about it.

In this case, the government along with every element of the society needs to raise awareness of the significance of preserving traditional folk art. If people are informed that their culture is at risk, they will do more to protect it.

Folk art has to be taught ever since a person is still in primary or secondary school so that they can learn and understand it; meanwhile, the government should hold more festivals or exhibitions about folk art. This opportunity would be served as a medium for the new generation to learn about a very significant aspect of their culture.

Russian Folk Art

The modern-classy Russian folk art in 2019, some forms of it, has been well known worldwide. I have been rounded up several handicrafts from Russia that deem the most cherished form of Russian folk art. These handicrafts include gzhel, palekh, Zhostovo Painting, Vologda Lace, Dymkovo Toy, Tula Samovar, matryoshka (nesting doll), Rostov Finift (enamel), Bogorodskoye Toy, and ural malachite.

For those who are interested in Russian folk art, below are the descriptions and examples of some Russian handicrafts.

  • Gzhel

Gzhel is a style of Russian ceramic. The name was taken from a village in the Moscow Oblast where crockery has been made since the 14th century. The vivid blue on a white, tin-glazed surface commenced in the 1830s. Nowadays, roughly thirty villages in the southeast of Moscow make a unique Russian handicraft like Gzhel and ship it both domestically and abroad.

  • Palekh

Palekh is a small painting whose theme revolves around Russian fairy tales or literary works. It is created with tempera paints on veneered boxes or cases made of papier-mâché.

  • Zhostovo Painting

It is a classic Russian folk art in which metal trays are decorated with beautiful floral designs. Such handicraft is still made in the Zhostovo village. Although floral designs are the most popular motif, other decorative designs, such as fruit and ornament, may be painted on the trays, as well as fairytale characters, natural landscapes, and still lives.

  • Vologda Lace

Back in the 17th century, this kind of lace was originally woven from silver and gold for the garments of church hierarchy and nobility. However, in today’s era, Vologda Lace has gained worldwide attention for its decorative patterns.

Vologda Lace was already a very famous folk art by the start of the 19th century and its popularity has been spread after European exhibitions have exhibited it. The lace is netted on koklyushkas, the unique devices made of linen threads, which take a form like a curly braid on the background of openwork designs.

  • Dymkovo Toy

It is a molded, painted clay figure that is sometimes created in the form of a pennywhistle. It is still produced in the village of Dymkovo, according to tradition. Back in the old days, figures of riders, horses, and birds were carried as talismans for preventing bad luck, but now the pennywhistles are considered children’s toys.

Up until the 20th century, Dymkovo Toys were produced in time for spring fairs. That is why today’s Dymkovo Toys often reflect both contemporary and ancient subjects of 19th – 20th centuries such as figures of noble women, water-bearers, nurses, and many others.

  • Tula Samovar

It is one of the traditional crafts of the Tula region. The Samovar was initially created as a practical device which is to boil water and make tea and coffee. However, today, although it is still a functional device, it is still able to serve more of an ornamental role.

  • Matryoshka (Nesting Doll)

Who does not know Russian nesting doll called matryoshka? It is probably the most recognizable handicraft from Russia. Matryoshka is a painted wooden doll that can be pulled apart to reveal more nesting dolls inside.

A common theme for a Matryoshka set is peasant women dressed in traditional apparel. However, there are also non-traditional dolls that become common. The new, modern sets can take on any theme such as sports figures, political leaders, and characters in Russian folk tales or science fiction.

  • Rostov Finift (Enamel)

It is a traditional Russian folk art in the form of painting on enamel such as brooches, rings, and earrings. It has its origins in Rostov back in the 18th century when artists first painted miniature figures on enamel for the church.

  • Bogorodskoye Toy

The making of this toy is originated from the ancient principles of medieval Russian art. Its cultural origin is closely related to Trinity Monastery of St. Sergius, a large center of national arts and crafts.

The distinctive hand-decorated figures of people and animals are based on Russian fairy tales characters or remarkable heroes; it is either painted or unadorned. Russian craftsmen do their work with much humor, imagination, and special attention to detail.

  • Ural Malachite

Ornamental pieces, jewelry, and furnishings of idyllic craftsmanship created using famous ural malachite. Ural malachite is also known as Russian stone or Peacock stone in old Russia. It makes for an excellent souvenir.

So, written above is a brief explanation of the modern-classy Russian folk art in 2019. Hopefully, this article can be useful.